Digitized by the Internet Archive
CHINESE POLICY OF THE UNITED STATES DURING THE
SECRETARYSHIP OF JOHN HAY
TSEH LING TSU
A. B. The University of Nanking, 1914.
Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the
MASTER OF ARTS
THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS
THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
1 HEREBY RECOMMEND THAT THE THESIS PREPARED UNDER MY
SUPERVISION RY 3<lp. q£L^-^ 5=5^
BE ACCEPTED AS FULFILLING THIS PART OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR
THE DEGREE OF Td A^^^tC^ fl Cl^Lo
In Charge of Thesis
Head of Department
Recommendation concurred in*
*Required for doctor's degree but not for master's
CHINESE POLICY OF THE UNITED STATES
DURING THE SECRETARYSHIP OF JOHN HAY .
Chapter I. Early American Policy in China.
Chapter II. Foreign Aggressions in China and Its Effects
upon America's Chinese Policy.
Chapter III. Hay's Chinese Policy.
Chapter IV. Conclusion.
EARLY AMERICAN t'OLICY IN CHINA.
All intelligent students of the history of America's inter-
course with China must be impressed with the fact that the policy
followed by the government of the United States in dealing with
Chinese questions has passed through two stages in its development.
The first stage covered a period of about one hundred years from the
arrival of the ship The Empress of China at Canton in 1784 to the
proclamation of Secretary Hay's first circular note in 1899. The
second stage, opening a new era in the history of American diplom-
acy in China, began with the twentieth century. It was in this
stage that the American government put its Chinese policy into a
definite shape and exerted unusual effort to maintain it. With this
policy the present paper will deal.
The policy that the United States adopted in its early
dealings with China was the traditional foreign policy pronounced
by Washington. It was based upon the principle of peaceful commer-
cial relations and the avoidance of entangling alliances. The early
American diplomats and consuls in China did what they could in pro-
tecting lawful American merchants and citizens in that country. To
open China's doors to the world's trade was the aim of the United
States which was in common with the European Powers engaged in the
Far Eastern trade. To co-operate with them in obtaining the aim
not by force but by peaceful means was the policy of the United
States. Its attitude towards China was marked with peace and
prudence, and evidently it was passive. But it began to change in
the later part of the last century.
The foreign policy of a nation is a thing everchanging.
Territorial expansion, commercial and industrial development of the
nation or a new international situation to which it must adapt it-
self often calls for the reshaping oi its foreign policy. The annex-
ation of the Hawaiian groups and the Philippine Islands brought the
United States into closer relations with the Far East. America's
Chinese trade grew to such magnitude and importance that the American
government could not but pay constant attention to the interests of
the Americans in China which were impaired by other Europeans. All
these led to the change of America's policy in China in the closing
years of the nineteenth century. The American government could no
longer assume the passive attitude. It had to resort to new measures
in keeping China's door open,- a door which certain Powers attempted
to shut against others.
What were the developments of the affairs in the Far East,
especially in China that made the United States change its attitude
towards Chinese questions? Why did Secretary Hay announce the policy
known by his name? How did he try to carry it out to its fullest
extent and to defend it? In order to throw some light upon these
questions let us examine the history of America's intercourse with
China and those of the general history of the Far East.
Before 1844 there was no treaty relation between China and
the United States, all relations being purely commercial. Since the
first American vessels arrived at Canton in 1784, American ships
visited that port from year to year by way of the Atlantic and
Indian Ooeans or by way of Cape „orn. in 1768 tho ship Columbia,
laden with seal and other skins in the vicinity of Cape ..orn, reach-
ed the port and there bartered for tea. This was the starting point
of the fur trade which later became almost an American monopoly in
China. The trade grew so fast that in 1789 there were fifteen Amer-
ican vessels at Canton. Two years later about 427,000"*" seal skins
were imported to China where there was always an insatiable market
for the fur. "The profits of this trade were very large amounting
in successive voyages to one thousand percent every second year."
Yet we must keep in mind that the fur traffic was one of the items
of the Chinese trade.
Although the trade was of considerable magnitude, it was
under terribly exposed conditions. Many American merchants called
the attention of the government to the necessity of better protec-
tion. John Jay, secretary for foreign affairs of the Continental
Congress, recommended to the Congress on January 20, 1786, that the
United States should appoint consuls to the ports in Cnina. Congress
consented to his proposal and !!r. Shaw was made consul at Canton.
The first American consul to China according to the custom of the
time established himself in Macao where all the European representa-
tives to China resided. There he took up the task of protecting
American interests. His successors saw the American commerce with
China going on without any disturbance until the war of 1812 which
1 Pitkin, A Statistical View of the United States, p. 149
and Appendix VII.
2 foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 100.
suspended the trade entirely. When the war was over the trade was
resume! and it showed unusual activity. The American government and
its representatives in China never failed in affording encouragement
and protection to this trade.
The European Powers and their representatives were equally
energetic in protecting their commercial interests in China, however
ruptures "between the Europeans and the native government spasmodic-
ally broke out on account of the exclusive policy of the Manchu
government. "The Manchus were on account of the smallness of their
number in the midst of the vast empire, compelled to adopt stringent
measures to preserve this conquest. For fearing that foreigners
should he tempted to snatch their prey from them, they have carefully
closed the parts of China, against them, thinking thus to secure
themselves from ambitious attempts from without." 4 Accordingly the
Manchu government adhered firmly to its policy of seclusion which
was conflicting with the policies of the Powers that sought commer-
cial expansion in the empire. It was the British that first attempt-
ed to break down the "Chinese wall". In 1834 the British government
sent Lord flapier to China to negotiate a treaty of commerce. The
Manchu government refused to open negotiations with him and ordered
him to leave Macao. Upon his disregarding this order, the former
stopped the British trade with Canton. British warships bombarded
the fort near the port. A truce was agreed upon by both the local
3 Johnson, America's Foreign Relati ons , Vol. I, p. 458.
4 Hue, The Chinese empire, p. 124.
authorities of the city and the british, and the trade was renewed.
Lord Uapier waited at Macao for further instructions from the home
government. A war between China and Great britain seemed imminent.
Mr. Shillarber was then iimerican consul at Canton. He
sent a detailed report of the situation in China to the department
of state, suggesting that the united States might ally herself with
Great Britain or take independent action in showing force formidable
enough to make the Chinese government concede America's demands as
to sharing in whatever privileges might be granted to the British.
The United States government did not manifest its attitude towards
this proposal because the British did not resort to force against
China though the conduct of the Manchu government justified war.
The British did not declare war against China until the
Manchu government resolved to stamp out the opium trade. The trade
to the British government was a source of revenue. During the five
years before the Opium War Great Britain and her Indian possessions
had drawn from the Chinese empire thirty to thirty-five millions
of dollars in gold and silver and forty to forty -five millions of
dollars of teas, raw silk, etc., in exchange for the drug. The
Manchu court sent a commissioner to Canton to see to the abolishment
of the trade. The commissioner wrested from the residents at the
port upwards of 29 t 000 chests of opium valued at more than ten mil-
lions of dollars. lie caused all the drug to be burned, and it was
5 Johnson, America's Foreign Relations, Vol. I, p. 463.
6 Doc. No. 40, House Ex. Docs. 26th Congress, 1st Sess.
Vol. II, 1859-40.
spark to tinder. The British government iramedi ately took up arms
against China. The war known as the Opium V.'ar was brought to an end
by the conclusion of peace of Nanking in 1642. The treaty of Nanking
was signed on August 29th in the same year. It stipulated that the
ports of Canton, Amoy , Foo-chow Kinpo , end Shanghai were to be opened
to foreign trade and residence, that HongKong was ceded to Great
Britain, and that future intercourse between the two nations was to
be conducted on terms of equality.
The United States did not participate in this war but its
representative was shrewd enough to share the fruits of the victory
gained by the British. As soon as he learned that the treaty in ques-
tion would include provisions for new tariff and trade regulations,
Commodore Kearny, keeping a squadron on Chinese water during the time
of the war, addressed a communication to the governcr of Canton,
asking that American citizens should enjoy the same privileges as the
British, that is to say, the principle of the most-favored-nation
clause should be included in the treaty. He received from the local
authority the assurance that the United States should have whatever
trade concessions which were to be made to Great Britain. He not
only asserted America's rights in China but also secured an open
door therein for all nations on equal terms. His communication
marked the starting point of treaty relations between China and the
The signature of the Treaty of Hanking prompted the Amer-
ican government to take measures for establishing treaty relations
8 Johnson, America's Foreign Relation, Vol. I, p. 464.
with China. On December 30. 1042, ^resident Tyler sent a special
me86age to Congress then in session, recommending that a mission
was to be dispatched to China to negotiate a treaty of commerce.
Congress made an appropriation of v '40 ,000 for the mission and Caleb
Cushing, a representative from Massachusetts , was appointed on Marct
8, 1845, envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to China.
The commissioner, his secretaries, and attaches, were conveyed to
the empire on a squadron of four warships.
The principal objects of this mission were explicitly
stated in the letter of instructions prepared by Secretary Webster.
They may be summed up as these: first, the government of the United
States did not aim at territorial aggrandizement or aggression;
second, it and its representatives in China would not encourage or
protect American citizens who were found violating well known laws
of China regulating trade; third, it would insist upon intercourse
on equal terms; and fourth, a treaty of trade was to be made. "Let
it be just. Let there be no unfair advantage on either side." 10
Friendship and justice constituted the spirit of the mission.
Mr. Cushing and his suite arrived at Macao February 24,
1844, and established the American legation in a palace of a former
Portuguese governor. He addressed a communication to the viceroy
of the two Kwang provinces announcing the intention and purpose of
his mission and his desire to deliver the President's letter to the
9 Webster's Works, Vol. II, pp. 467, 469.
10 president's letter to Emperor of China, Senate Doc. 138,
28th Cong., 2nd Sess., pp. 1, 8.
Kmperor. In reply the viceroy asked Mm to stay at Macao and to
wait for a commissioner sent by the Peking government to take up
the matter of treaty negotiation. The commissioner Tsiyeng arrived
at Canton June 16, and five days later opened negotiations with Mr.
Cushing at the Portuguese settlement. As a result of the negotia-
tions, a treaty of commerce was signed on July 3. When the main
object of the mission was obtained, Mr. Cushing entrusted the Pres-
ident's letter to Tsiyeng and returned to America." 1 "' 1 '
Throughout the course of hit negotiations with the govern-
ment of China, Mr. Cushing adhered to the principles set forth in
Mr. Webster's letter of instructions and to the principle later
known as that of equal opportunity. These principles were embodied
in the treaty of 1844. In order tc see how Mr. Cushing worked out
these principles into the treaty let us examine its main provisions.
For the purpose of protecting the American's rights in
China the treaty provided that "citizens of the United States who
may commit any crime in China shall be subject to be tried and
punished only by the consul or other public functionary of the
United States thereto authorized according to the laws of the United
States"; and that "all questions in regard to rights whether
of property or person, arising between citizens of the United States
in China, shall be subject to the jurisdiction of and regulated by
the authority of their own government In other words,
11 Moore, A digest of international Law, Vol.V, pp. 418, 420.
12,13 Malloy, Treaties and Conventions between the United
States and the other Powers, Vol. I, pp. 187, 202, 203.
in criminal oases the offender was to be disposed of by his own
government, while civil cases between the Chinese and the Americans
were to be adjusted by the joint action of the Chinese and American
authorities. The principle of extraterritoriality had been in-
cluded in the Treaty of Nanking by the British. Mr. Cushing follow-
ed the example, because his conviction was that the United States
ought not to concede to any foreign states under any circumstances,
jurisdiction over the life and liberty of any citizen of the United
States, unless that foreign state be a Christian nation.
As an example, I will cite a case during the Chino-
Japanese War in order to show how the American government made use
of the principle of extraterritoriality. Two Japanese charged as
spies were arrested in the French concession in Shanghai. The
French consul handed the Japanese over to the American consul and
the latter had them kept in the American custody. The Chinese
government demanded their surrender. As to this, the American
consul asked for instruction from his home government. Secretary
Graham thought that these Japanese were not entitled to the extra-
territorial privilege and that they should be delivered to the
Chinese authorities. These spies were handed over and executed
by the Chinese government. Thus we see that the American govern-
ment did not abuse the privilege secured by Mr. Cushing.
Further than affording protection to Americans' rights
in China the American government aimed at the protection of
America's lawful commerce in that country. In regard to the opium
Cited in Foster, American diplomacy in the Orient, p. 88
trade, legalized by the treaty of Nanking, the treaty of 1844 pro-
vided that "Citizens of the United States who shall attempt to trade
in opium or any other contraband articles shall be subjeot to be
dealt with by the Chinese government without being entitled to any
oountenance or protection from that of the United States" The
American government has held this attitude towards that trade up to
the present time. In 1858 Mr. Reed was instructed to say to the
Chinese government that "the United States would not seek for its
citizens the legal establishment of the opium trade nor would it
uphold them in any attempt to violate the laws of China by the intro-
duction of that article into the country". 10 By the treaty of 1880
no citizen of the United States was permitted to import opium into
any of the open ports of China. In this respect the principle
of American diplomacy in China was based upon humanity and it was
different from the British policy in China which had mercenary
motives behind it.
But the American and the British policies in China had one
point in common, that was the idea of equal opportunity. In the
supplementary treaty of commerce and navigation concluded between
the British and the Chinese governments in the year 1843, the most-
favored-nation clause was for the first time introduced. Queen
Malloy, Treaties and Conventions between the United
States and the other Powers, Vol.1, p. 202.
16 Cited in Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 120.
Malloy, Treaties and Conventions between the United
States and the other Powers, Vol. I, p. 239.
Victoria held thiit "equal fa*or should be shown to the industry and
commercial enterprise of all nations" in China, lir . pushing
agreed with this idea and introduced the most-i'avorcsd-nati on clause
in the treaty of 1844.
Twelve years after the signature of the first treaty be-
tween the two nations, another treaty was concluded. It was the
outcome of the second Anglo-Chinese war. About the year 1854 the
British government wished to have the Treaty of Hanking revised but
the Manchu government refused to take up the matter of the revision
of the treaty with the British commissioner. The British government
at last appealed to force in order to bring the Manchu government
to terms and declared war upon China in 1856 on the ground that
the English flag was insulted in the incident of the Arrow lorcha.
The British captured Canton and got ready for a campaign to the
north of China. France joined Great Britain.
Dr. Parker, the American representative in China, was in
favor of the coercive measure of the English and the French but
the policy of his home government was peaceful. Secretary Marcy
instructed him that "The British government evidently have objects
beyond those contemplated by the United States and we ought not
be drawn along with it however anxious it may be for our co-
operation", and the United States would rather have its repre-
sentative and naval officer in China to do what was required for
Victoria's speech quoted by Mr, Gushing cited in Moore,
A Digest of International Law, Vol. V, p. 418.
19 Moore, international Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 4£2.
the defense of American citizens and the protection of their proper-
ty without being included in the British quarrel or producing any
serious disturbance in its amicable relations with China. u Such
was the nature of American policy in China at the time of the second
Anglo-Chinese war. Since this policy was not in accordance with
barker's views he resigned. Mr. Reed succeeded him as minister to
China in 1857.
Mr. Reed was instructed that he should aid his English
and i-rench colleagues to attain the object of the revision of the
treaties signed after the Opium War. He was to co-operate peacefully
with his colleagues because his home government held that the united
States was not at war with the government of China nor did it seek
any other purpose than those of lawful commerce and the protection
of the lives and property of its citizens. Clinging to this
policy he withheld from any hostile action against China.
The allied forces of Great Britain and France pushed their
way to Tien Tsien and the Manchu government was impelled to open
negotiations concerning the revision of the treaties. There Mr.
Reed went and entered upon negotiations with the Chinese commission-
ers as to the revision of the Treaty of 1844. As a result, Reed's
Treaty was concluded between China and the United States at the
same time that treaties between China and Russia, France and Great
Britain were signed. The general features of Reed's Treaty were
similar to the other four treaties. The treaty consisted of
Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 230.
Moore, International Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 424.
concessions: (1) as to diplomatic privileges such as residence of
American minister at Peking and direct access to the imperial govern-
ment through Chung-ti -Yamen; (2) as to privileges of trade and
travel; and (3) as to religious toleration on Chinese Christians.
When the Manchu government was humiliated to yield to
these demands of the foreigners, it was engaged in ^uelling a re-
bellion rising from within. The rebellion known as Tai Ping rebel-
lion aroused in one way or another the interests of the United
States. The leader of the rebellion Kung Hsiu Chuan knew an Amer-
ican missionary in Canton, the Rev. J. J. Roberts, and got from him
some ideas of ChrUstianity . The corruption of the Manchu govern-
ment and the bread riot resulting from a famine encouraged him to
start a gigantic movement against the existing dynasty. The Tai
Pings for a time seemed to be able to overthrow the Manchu govern-
ment. The American government instructed Mr. Mclane.its commissionei
to China, that "Should the revolutionary movement now in progress
in China be successful and the political power of the country pass
into other hands, you will, at your discretion, recognize the govern-
ment de facto and treat it as the existing government of the
country". He did investigate the insurgent court at Hanking
and found nothing promising in it. Therefore he did not give the
Tai Pings any political recognition. Later on the American minis-
ters to China joined their European colleagues in the policy of
protecting the treaty ports against the invasion of the Tai Pings.
22 Senate Ex. Doc. 39, 36 Cong., 1st Sess.
An American gentleman, Mr. Frederick T, Ward, organized a Chinese
army under command of European officers ana fought against the Tai
Pings. The army was later known as "Ever Victory Army" and played
a considerable part in repressing the rebellion.
In the year 1861, when the rebellion waB at its zenith,
Anson Burlingame was commissioned to China. With a view of famil-
iarizing himself with the general condition of the Europeans and
the state of the American interests in China, he spent a few months
in visiting the ports in the empire. Then he advanced northward
and installed himself in the American legation in Peking which was
opened to diplomatic residence in accordance with the conventions
secured by the British and the French one year before. He came
into contact with Prince Kung, then the head of the Board of Foreign
Affairs, called Chung-li-yamen, already referred to elsewhere, and
won his confidence. With frankness and sincerity he attracted his
European colleagues. Thus his career in China made an auspicious
A review of his correspondence with his home government
will reveal the principle of his action when in China. On the way
to Peking he wrote to Secretary Seward saying "If the treaty powers
could agree among themselves to the neutrality of China and togeth-
er secure order in the treaty ports and give their moral support
to that party in China in favor of order, the interests of humanity
would be subserved". It is very plain that his policy was to
Johnson, America's Foreign Relations , Vol.1, p. 473.
24 Diplomatic Correspondence 1864, Part I, p. 859.
secure co-operation among the representatives of the Powers in China
and he was successful at this point.
He succeeded in "bringing these representatives to agree upon
his policy which was stated in his letter to Mr. Seward on June 20,
1863. This policy was "that while we claim our treaty rights to "buy
and sell and hire in the treaty ports, subject in respect to our
rights of property and person to the jurisdiction of our own govern-
ments, we will not ask for nor take concessions of territory of the
Chinese government over its own people nor ever menace the territorial
integrity of the Chinese Empire". 25 It follows that this policy was
to maintain the territorial integrity of China "by means of co-
operation among the Powers in China.
The British and French ministers pledged themselves to this
policy. The Russian minister to China, Mr. Balluzick, announced that
the Russian government did not desire to menace the territorial integ-
rity of china "but wished to bring China into the family of nations.
No matter what real motives might "be behind these ministers' diplomacy
Iffr. Burlingame f s task was to work for the realization of his policy.
Fe protested against the claim made by the French consul at Ninpo to
acquire the concession of a part of the city for the French govern-
ment and succeeded in making the French minister have his consul with
draw his claim. Fe obtained from the British minister, Mr. Brace, a
circular to the British, consuls defining British jurisdiction over
the leased territory to China. Fe in such fashion carried out his
Diplomatic Correspondence, 1864, p. 859. Cited in
Williams, Anson Burlingame, p. 250.
F. W. Williams, Ansom Burlingame, p. 253.
^ .nii ? 7 9. S. Diplomatic Correspondence, 1864, Part I, p. 851 . Cited
HLWilljLams, Anson Burlingame. p. 256.
Notioing his friendly and impartial attitude towards Jhina,
the .'eking government could not but regard him as a true friend.
When he was about to return to America in 1«67 , the emperor of China
made him envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary of China
to the treaty powers. The object of this mission was to persuade
the Powers to abandon the policy of force, to treat China on an
equality with other nations, and to let her work out the system of
reform in her own way and time. Mr. Burlingame accepted the com-
mission on the ground that "when the oldest nation in the world
containing one third of the human race, for the first time seeks
to come into relation with the west and requests the youngest nation
through its representative, to act as the medium of such change,
the mission is not one to be solicited or rejected".
When the Chinese commissioner and his associates arrived
at Washington, the President and Congress honoured them with
dinners. It was on this occasion that Secretary Seward suggested
that the American convention of 1858 might be amended with the two
purposes: (1) of adopting Mr. Burlingame" s policy of more liberal
treatment of China and (£) of securing a plentiful supply of Chin-
ese labor for the western states where Chinese laborers were welcome
by American capitalists. Burlingame favorably accepted Seward's
suggestion and concluded a treaty between China and the United
28 Burlingame' s letter to Seward cited in F. V/. Williams,
Anson Burlingame, p. 240.
29 British - one
French - one
Chinese - two.
States. The treaty was signed on July 28, 1868 , and proclaimed by
the United States government in 1870. Then as the Chinese commis-
sioner he proceeded to London, I'aris, and merlin. At these courts
he spoke for China in such a manner that attentive hearings were
time and again accorded to him.
Upon his arrival at St. Petersburg he fell ill and passed
away, thus bringing the Chinese mission to an end. China lost a
real friend, a friend in need at the time when most of the foreigners
in the country were affected with anti -Chinese prejudice. She lost
a friend who desired that her autonomy might be preserved; that her
independence might be secured; that she might have equality and dis-
pense equal privileges to all nations. 3u All these desires were ex-
pressed in the treaty 3 * he concluded for China with the United
The most important feature of this treaty is the stipula-
tion regarding voluntary emigration. Article V reads thus "the
United States of America and the £mperor of China cordially recog-
nize the mutual advantage of the free migration and emigration of
their citizens and subjects respectively from the one country to
the other for purpose of curiosity, of trade, or as permanent resi-
dents. The high contracting parties therefore join in reprobating
°° Burlingame's speech given at a banquet in Mew York City,
cited Anson Burlingame, p. 137.
31 For China's autonomy see Article I of Burliname treaty.
Treaties and Conventions between the United States and other Powers,
Vol. I, p. 233.
any other than an entirely voluntary emigration for these purposes,
they consequently agree to pass laws making it a penal offense for
a citizen of the United States or Chinese subjects to take Chinese
subjects either to the United States or to any other foreign country
or for a Chinese subject or the citizen of the United States to take
a citizen of the United States to China or to any other foreign
country without their full and voluntary consent respectively."
This stipulation had in view two things: (1) free emigration and (£)
the prohibition of the so-called coolie trade.
The coolie trade in the eye of American statesmen was
scarcely less excusable than the African slave trade. The American
government regarded the trade as an inhumane practice. Dr. Parker
when American minister to China issued a notice warning American
vessels from engaging in the transportation of Chinese coolies to
Peru, Cuba, and other places. In 1862 Congress passed a law pro-
hibiting American vessels to carry Chinese to foreign ports to be
held as coolies and forbidding American citizens to engage in the
trade or to build vessels for the trade. American naval officers
were authorized to seize any American vessel that was found carry-
ing Chinese coolies. American consuls at the ports of China were
to examine emigrants on ships bound for the United States and to
see whether they departed voluntarily. 23
32 Treaties and Conventions between the United States
and other Powers, Vol. I, p. 235.
33 Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 281.
On the other hand the United States encouraged voluntary
Chinese immigrants. When the Burlingame treaty was concluded the
favorable attitude of western states towards Chinese laborers was
at its height because of the efficiency and cheapness of the latter.
In 1870 there were more than fifty thousand Chinese employed on the
western section of the Pacific Railway . Cheapness accounted for the
welcome of Chinese laborers by the Americans at the beginning and it
was the main cause that labor unions started agitations against
their Chinese competitors afterwards. The revulsion of America's
public sentiment toward Chinese labor led to the treaties concluded
between the United States and China in the years 1888 and 1894.
These treaties practically nullified the free emigration stipulation
of the Burlingame treaty. In this respect one can not help agree-
ing with Prof. Mayo Smith in saying that "As a matter of fact it
does not appear that the Burlingame treaty changed the actual con-
dition of things very much".
During the period between the signature of the Burlingame
treaty and the appearance of Secretary Hay's first circular note
most of America's dealings with China were those concerning the
Chinese in the United States. It was engrossed in its internal
development. Since Caleb Cushing set forth the principle of equal
opportunity and Anson Burlingame added the principle of maintenance
of territorial integrity of China, the American policy remained
intact until the purchase of Alaska and the annexation of the
54 Cited in Williams, Anson Burlingame, p. 159.
hawaiin and Philippine islands changed America's position on the
Pacific and the policies of the Powers created a new situation in
China. Then the interests of the American government in Chinese
questions revived and itB policy was reaffirmed. These topics will
be discussed in the next chapter.
FOREIGN AGGRESSIONS IN CHINA AND THEIR EFFECT
UPON AMERICA'S CHINESE POLICY.
That the Chinese policy of the United States during the
last decade especially the last lUBtrum of the nineteenth century
was the outcome of the international complication in China is an es-
tablished fact. The entangling situation developed in the most im-
portant period of China's relations with the Powers was due to two
main factors: firstly, china's weakness invited in foreign encroach-
ment, and secondly, the jarring interests of the Powers gave rise to
their conflicting policies in the Chinese Empire. To meet this sit-
uation the government of the United States advanced its Chinese pol-
icy. In order to appreciate its inwardness, it is necessary for us
to know something about China's position and the relative positions
of the Powers in that country during the later part of the last
Ab a result of long isolation China was far behind those
Powers with which she came into contact. Her troops were not well
disciplined nor were they efficiently equipped. Until the late
eighties of the nineteenth century she had no arsenals nor a navy.
She could not protect her coast line if her enemy attempted to at-
tack it. Moreover the Manchu government, a combination of the Man-
darin bureaucracy and the Manchu monarchy was self-sufficient,
corrupt, and unprogressive. Under such conditions it is no wonder
that China was a field for foreign expansion.
The occupation of Hongkong by the British marked the be-
ginning of foreign encroachment on the Chinese Empire. The British
took the island not only for the purpOBe of having an entrepot of
trade hut also a place of armes. Lord Derby said "We occupy Hong-
Kong not with the object of colonizing hut of using it from a mil-
itary point of view? 1 The possession of the island by the British
secured Great Britain a unique position in China. With the excep-
tion of the Russians in north China, no other Power had a position
in China so commanding as that of Great Britain.
She was not contented with it and fixed her covetous eyes
upon the south-western frontier of China. Having obtained her su-
premacy in ndia she would from thence extend her influence into
western China, the upper Yangtze valley, through Burma. In 1874
a British expedition set out to explore the Upper Yangtze region,
penetrated as far as Mouninse, and was checked there. Six years
later another expedition explored that region and a member of this
expedition, Mr. Margary, was murdered by the natives. Profiting by
the death the British minister at Peking extracted the Chefoo con-
vention from the Peking government granting the British the right
of sending an expedition from Peking through Kansu and Kokonor or
by way of Szechulen to Tibet and thence to india. The British did
carry it out. The British government gradually realized its designs
While tie British were establishing influences in the
South and West of China, the Russians were pushing their way into
1 Cited in Colquhoun, China in Transformation, p. 304.
the north of the Chinese Empire. Russi a 1 8 occupation of the Amur
province placed her in juxtaposition with the eastern border of
China. By the treaty of Peking in 1860 Russia got possession of the
maritime province of Manchuria with the fine harbor of Vladivostook.
She annexed the .Oildja district in the west of China. In the year
1882 the Moscovite government decided to build the trans-Siberian
railway and a few years later (1896) it secured permission from the
Manchu government to link the trans-Siberian railway with Vladivos-
took through Manchuria. 2
Meanwhile the French did not remain inactive. In 1861
France annexed Cochin-China. From this foothold, French expansion
in the Indo-China peninsula went forward in all directions. By 1882
the French government began to struggle with the government of China
for suzerainty over Annam. The strife finally resulted in the Franco-
Chinese war which was closed by the treaty of 1885. By this treaty
the government of China recognised France's sovereignty over Cochin
China and her protectorate over Cambodia and Annan.
During the first period of foreign aggression upon China -
a period of about fifty years from the Opium War to the Chino-
Japanese War - the Powers encroached upon the fringe of Chinese
territory. Even Japan, a little island empire, once a pupil of
China, participated in the spoliation of the Chinese Empire. Her
8 Ross, The Russo-Japanese War, p. 20.
NOTE: By this route through Chinese territory the length
of the railway between Lake Baikal and Vladivostok would be short-
ened some 500 miles and the period required for its completion,
Hayes, A Political and Social History of Modern Europe
Vol.11, p. 569.
aggressive action will be discussed later in connection wit>i the
Chino- Japanese War.
Let us see what development of Americans relations with
the Far East took place during the latter part of this period. In
1867 the United States purchased Alaska, the Russian possession in
North America directly opposite to Manchuria. The possession of that
region by the United States extended the base of American commerce
with china. n To unite the East of Asia with the West of America
is the aspiration of commerce now." 4 Furthermore, the completion of
the pacific Railway in 1869 secured the United States an important
position in the commerce between the Pacific Coast and China. Al-
though it had no foothold on the Pacific or on Chinese soil, the
development of affairs evidently pointed to the direction that it
could not hold aloof of Chinese questions. When the China- Japanese
War broke out in 1894-1895, the government of the United States did
a good deal service for the belligerents.
This war was the natural result of Japan's aggressive
policy concerning the possession of China. In 1874 Japan seized
the Liu Kiu archipelago and then turned her covetous eyes upon
Formosa and Korea. In 1876 she recognized Korea as an independent
kingdom. But the government of China would not give up its claims
to sovereignty over Korea because for thousands of years the latter
had been under a Chinese protectorate. When China sent troops to
Korea to reassert the claim, the Japanese government seized the
Korean king, who had invited the Chinese troops, and prepared for
Charles Sumner, cited in Hart, American History told by
contemporaries, Vol. IV, p. 547.
war with China. The details of the war known as the Chino-
Japanese War do not concern us directly: it will suffice to notice
the diplomatic activities of the Powers interested in the War and
especially the attitude of the United States towards this conflict.
The American government held that the deplorable war
between China and Japan would in no way endanger American policy
in Asia. It declared that the United States would maintain
impartial and friendly neutrality. Throughout the course of the
war the American diplomatic and consular representatives in the
countries involved in the war at the request of the combatant gov-
ernments extended their good offices to the Chinese in Japan and
to the Japanese in China respectively. The ministers were instruct
ed that their function was personal and unofficial and that they
should do what they could consistently with international law
and America»s position as a neutral for the protection of the
Chinese residents and their interests in Japan and of the Japanese
in China. 5 The service was discharged cheerfully and with consid-
erable difficulty and to the satisfaction of the belligerents.
A few days after the declaration of war, Great Britain,
Germany, France and Russia contemplated to intervene in the hos-
tilities between China and Japan upon the basis that Korea's in-
dependence was to be guaranteed by the Powers and Japan was to
receive an indemnity for the war expense from the Chinese govern-
ment. The British ambassador in Washington waited upon Secretary
Gresham to ascertain whether the United States would join Great
5 Mr. Gresham to Mr. Dun Foreign Relation of the
United States, 1894, pp. 372, 373.
Britain in the proposed intervention. Mr. Gresham replied that
"the President earnestly desires that China and Japan shall speed-
ily agree upon terras of peace alike honorable to "both and not humil-
iating to Korea, he can not join England, Germany, Russia and France
in an intervention as required".
Although the government of the United States declined to
co-operate with the Powers in the contemplated intervention of the
war between China and Japan, it made a separate effort to mediate
between these nations. Mr. Dun, the American minister at Tokyo,
was directed by his home government to approach the Japanese govern-
ment with a view of ascertaining whether a tender of the Presidents
good offices in the interests of a peace alike honorable to both
nations would be acceptable to the government at Tokyo. 7 The
offer of meditation was rejected by the Japanese government because
it did not feel disposed to entertain an overture of peace at the
time when it had not pressed its victories far enough for the ad-
vancement of severe demands.
The Japanese gained one battle after another over the
Chinese. In the early spring of 1895 the Japanese troops pushed
their way to the Liaotung peninsula, captured Port Arthur and
Talienwan and seized the naval base of Weihaiwei. Then the
Japanese government made its intention for peace known to the Peking
government through the American ministers at Tokyo and Peking.
6 Foreign Relation of the United States, 1894, p. 325.
7 Mr. Gresham to Mr. Dun Nov. 16, 1894, Foreign Rela-
tions of the United States, 1894, p. 345.
Through the mediation of the American diplomatic representatives
negotiations for a peace were opened. The result was the treaty
of Shemonoseki , signed on the 17th of April (1895). By that treaty
the complete independence of Korea was recognized by the govern-
ment of china, and the Liaotung peninsula and Formosa were ceded
Six days after the signature of the treaty the Russian,
German and French governments addressed a joint note to the Chinese
government protesting againBt the cession of the Liaotung penin-
sula on the ground that it would threaten the safety of their in-
terests in that quarter of the Chinese Empire. Ath the same time
they advised Japan to relinquish her conquests on the mainland.
She reluctantly withdrew her demands on the mainland and agreed
to receive in return an additional indemnity. Thus Russia deprived
Japan of her fruits of victory. $hat was the motive of the Rus-
sian government in doing this?
The explanation is not hard to find. The Russian govern-
ment's century-old ambition was to obtain an ice free outlet in
the Far East. Vladivostok was not ice free all the winter but
Port Arthur was. Fad the Russian government not torn up the treaty
of shemonoseki, it could not have had its desire for an ice-free
harbor in the Far East satisfied. It took the initiative in
demanding the revision of the treaty because it wished to pre-
serve Port Arthur for itself. By the Carsini agreement which
8 Hayes, A Political and Social History of Modern
Europe. Vol. II, p. 566.
the Russian government made with the government of China in 1896,
the former obtained from the latter a concession for the construc-
tion of a railway through Manchuria thus connecting the trans-
Siberian railway with Port Arthur and the lease of Kiao-chow to
Russia for fifteen years.
Being alarmed by Russians aggressive policy and prompted
by selfish motives 9 Germany at once resorted to drastic measures,
disregarding international comity. Before 1895 Germany had not
played any prominent role in Far Eastern politics. But now she re-
solved to distinguish herself and to single herself out of the rest
of the Powers by an act unprecedented in the annals of diplomacy.
Upon the murder of two missionaries in Shangtun Province in November
1897, German vessels of war anchored off the harbor of Kiao-chow,
immediately landed troops, and seized the city of Kiao-chow. Then
the German minister took up negotiations with the Chinese govern-
ment. As a result a convention was concluded. "A zone of 50 kilo-
meters surrounding the Bay of Kiao-chow at high water" 10 was ceded
to Germany. The Chinese government also ceded to "Germany on lease
provisionally for ninety-nine years both sides of the entrance to
the Bay of Kiao-chow". 11 Kiao-chow was declared a free port on
September 2, 1898. Germany's mailed fist set the evil ball a
rolling. Fer high-handed measure marked the opening of the second
NOTE: For Germany »s motive for seizing the city, see
Mr. Denby»s report For. Rel. of the U.S., 1898, pp. 187, 189.
Das Staatsarchiev, vol. 61, No. 11518. Cited in
Moore, International Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 473.
Cited in Moore, International Law Digest, Vol.V, p. 474.
period of fierce land- scrambling by the Powers in China.
As soon as the German question was settled the Russian
government complained to the Chinese government that the cession
of Kiao-chow to Germany disturbed the political status quo in the
Far East and that Russian interests in this quarter were affected
adversely. On the 18th of December Russian war ships occupied Port
Arthur and impelled the Chinese government to lease the port and
Talienwan with adjacent waters, for twenty-five years, subject to
prolongation by mutual agreement. 13 The Russians, like the Germans,
declared Talienwan to be a free port but closed Port Arthur to other
nations. Now the world saw the reason why Russia two years earlier
interfered with the shemonoseki treaty.
The gains of Germany and Russia were not without effect
upon the French government. It demanded and secured the cession of
Kwangchau Bay on the same terms as xiao-chow had been ceded to
Germany. 14 Kwangchau Wan, situated in the district of Keichow,
Kwangtung Province served as a halfway station between the extreme
East and Indo-China.
Great Britain watched the action of the Russian, German,
and French governments with jealousy and apprehension. Their gains
were her grievances, she would not remain a passive spectator.
The British government made the Chinese government cede Wei-hai-Wei
to Great Britain on the same terms that Port Arthur had been ceded
13 For. Rel. of the U. S. , vol. 1898, p. 182.
14 ibid. 1898, p. 191.
to Russia. "Wei-hai-wei is an excellent harbor much larger and
better than Port Arthur." 15 The British made Wei-hai-wei "a
second or northern Hongkong" 16 - a naval base from which they could
keep a watchful eye upon their traditional rivals, the Russians.
Furthermore the British government secured the lease of Mirs Bay,
Deep Bay and the adjacent islands near Hongkong.
As all the Powers except Russia announced that they would
make their leased territories in China free ports open to inter-
national settlement and trade, their measures did not seem to the
American government to menace America's interests in China. But
the President of the United States in no case was in sympathy with
a power which sought a lease of Chinese territory and instructed
the American minister at Pekin, Mr. Conger, to assume an absolutely
neutral attitude. Had the Powers not taken the measure of marking
out the "spheres of influence" which evidently jeopardized America's
interests and impaired her treaty rights in China perhaps the govern
ment of the United states would not have announced its Chinese pol-
icy in 1899.
The immediate cause of Secretary Hay's announcement was
the doctrine of "spheres of influence". Great Britain had the
honor of being the leading figure in marking out the "spheres of
15 Foreign Relation of the United States, 1848, p. 190.
16 ibid, 1898, p. 190.
17 See President McKinley's message, For. Rel. of the U. S,
1899, appendix p. 18.
18 Sec. Hay to Mr. Conger tel. March 2,1899.
China V 649. cited Moore, International Law Digest, Vol.V, p. 475.
influence" in the Chinese Empire. In 1898 Great Britain extracted
from the Chinese Government a pledge that the Yangtze valley would
never be alienated to another Power, thus marking out the vast
territories of central china and the richest provinces of the em-
pire as the British sphere of influence. Prance made the Chinese
government promise not to alienate to another Power the provinces
of Kwangtung, Kwangsi, Yunnang, and the island of Hainan. Japan
secured a similar promise as regards the province of Fukien. Ger-
many made Shangtung her sphere of influence and Russia would have
her sphere of influence include the whole of Manchuria. The Powers
took the first opportunity to seize special privileges in China
without paying any respect to China's rights or giving any thought
to international ethics.
The actions of the land-hungry Powers were not destitute
of far-reaching effects. They called forth reactions "both from
China and the United States. These reactions will he discussed in
The reactions on the part of China were of two types,
constructive and destructive. The constructive reaction found its
expression in the reform movement of 1898. The Emperor of the
Manchu dynasty seeing city after city leased to the Powers, the
spheres of influence marked in the Empire, and numberless demands
granted, was conscious of the helplessness of the government and
wished to carry out reforms suggested by a few enthusiastic but
inexperienced Chinese scholars. The well-intentioned Emperor met
obstacles of great resisting force. There was a group of Manchus
and Chinese who were enemies to the new order and western civiliz-
ation. The Empress dowager was at the head of the conservative
and reactionary party. She took over the reins of government from
the Emperor, whom she practically imprisoned, and had six of the
reformers executed. The leaders of the revolutionary movement man-
aged to flee to Japan. Thus a doup d» etat was affected with the
slightest disturbance. This coup d' etat sealed for the time "being
the doom of the peaceful regeneration of China by means of reforms
and inaugurated the anti-foreign movement which culminated in the
Boxer Uprising. After the reform movement failed, the conservative
party in power resolved to stamp out foreign influence in China
The reactions on the part of the United States can be
better appreciated in the light of the new development of America's
position in the Pacific basin. As early as 1893 the question of
annexation of Hawaii to the American Union was brought before the
American government by the new government of the Hawaiian Republic.
The question was not settled until after the close of the Spanish
War. From the military point of view the annexation seemed necessary
In July, 1898, Congress by joint resolution passed the bill that
the Hawaiian islands were to be incorporated into the American
Union. 20 At the close of the Spanish War, Spain ceded the Philip-
pine islands to the United States. These two momentous events, the
annexation of Hawaii and the cession of the Philippine group to
the United states changed its relations with the Far East. The
Americans began to realize that the future prosperity of the United
19 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1894, appendix p. 645.
20 Hart, The American Nation: A History, vol. 25, pp.
States was to be sought in the Asiatic trade and by having these
islands as stepping stones to the Far j.ast and as bases for commer-
cial operation the Americans were in a position to compete with
other nations in commerce and industries in China.
Yet the policies of the powers in ohina darkened the pros
pect of America's commercial development in that country. r lhey
claimed the enjoyment of special privileges in their own"spheres" .
They might at any time carry out new measures of exclusion so that
their own capitalists would be under conditions more favorable and
that other nations could not compete with them. If such measures
had been carried out American capitalists would have suffered the
most because the United States had no sphere of influence in China
wherein they could enjoy special privileges. That meant that China
would no longer be a market for American products. At such a crit-
ical moment the government of the United States could nox be a
spectator but became an actor in the scene. In September ,1899 ,
Secretary ^ay addressed circular notes to all the Powers having in-
terests in China, requesting each of them to declare substantially
to the following effect.
"First. That each will in no wise interfere with any
treaty port or any vested interest within any so-called 'sphere of
interest' or leased territory it may have in China.
"Second. That the Chinese treaty tariff of the time being
shall apply to all merchandise landed or shipped to all such ports
as are within such 'sphere of interest' (unless they be free ports)
no matter to what nationality it may belong and that duties so lev-
iable shall be collected by the Chinese government.
"Third. That it will levy no higher harbor dues on vessels
of another nationality frequenting any port in such sphere, than
shall be levied on vessels of its own nationality and no higher
railroad charge over lines built, controlled or operated within
such sphere on merchandise belonging to citizens or subjects of
other nationalities transported through such 'sphere' than shall be
levied on similar merchandise belonging to its own nationals trans-
ported over equal distances"
On the surface this note was merely economical but in fact
it was political. It performed a two -fold function. On the one
hand it aimed at the protection of America's interests in China
and on the other hand it aimed to prevent the Powers from taking
a further step towards exclusive economic domination in their own
spheres, thus preventing them from carrying out the plan of the
political absorption of the spheres. As Secretary Kay knew that
there was a conflict between the powers and no agreement had yet
been entered upon by them as to what should be done with China, he
approached them separately with his notes. Great Britain, France,
Germany, Russia, Japan, Italy - one after the other received a note.
Accordingly each government was to give reply separately. From the
replies we can see what these Powers thought of the propositions
set forth by the famous American diplomat.
Great Britain declared in her reply to the United States
that the British government had no intention or desire to depart
21 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1899, p. 129
from Its traditional policy of securing equal opportunity for the
subjects and citizens of all nations in regard to commercial enter-
prise in China and that it would apply the three principles for-
warded by the American government to "all the leased territories of
Wei-hai-wei and all territory in China which may hereafter be ac-
quired by Great Britain by lease or otherwise and all spheres of
interests now held or that may hereafter be held by her in China,
prov ided similar dec larati on is mad e by other powers concerned. " 22
Germany's answer to the United States said that the German
government "practically carried out to the fullest extent in its
Chinese possessions absolute equality of treatment of all nations
with regard to trade, navigation and commerce; and that it "enter-
tains no thought of departing in the future from this principle ....
so long as it is not forced to do so, on account of consideration of
reciprocity by a divergence from it by other governments" 24 and that
it was "readt to participate with the United States and the other
powers in an agreement made upon these lines by which the same
rights are reciprocally secured."
The Russian government in its usual involved diplomatic
reply declared that in so far as its leased territory in China was
concerned, it had followed the policy of an open door "by creating
Dalienwan a free port" and "if at some future time that port al-
though remaining free itself should be separated by customs limits
22 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1899, pp. 357, 136.
23, 24, 25 For# Ee i, f the U. S. , 1899, p. 131.
from other portions of tho territory in question, the customs duties
would be levied in the zone subject to the tariff upon all foreign
merchandise without distinction as to the nationality" 26 , that
Russia had no intention whatever of claiming any privileges for its
own subjects to the exclusion of other foreigners in the ports
opened or to be opened to foreign commerce by China, and that the
question of customs duties belonged to China. 27
The government of the United States also received from
the French and Japanese governments favorable replies with the
natura l reservations . It did not receive a final reply from the
Italian government until Mr. Draper, the American ambassador to
Italy, approached that government with the declarations of all the
other governments. The Italian government then declared that it
would adhere willingly to the propositions announced by the American
Thus Secretary Kay with diplomatic strategy of a high
order obtained from each of the Powers a formal assurance of its
adherence to his enlightened principles. In order to make the
Powers commit themselves to their pledge to maintain the open door
policy he went one step further On March 20, 1900, he instructed
the American ambassadors at London, merlin, Paris, St. Petersburg,
and Kome and the American minister at Tokyo to inform the
26, 27 For< Rel< of the ^ g ^ 1899, pp. 141, 142.
28 For France's reply see For. Eel. of the U. S. , 1899 ,pp,
128, 129. For Japan's reply see ibid. p. 139.
For the reply see ibid. p. 139.
governments to which they were accredited that the oondition ou
originally attached to the acceptance of the declaration suggested
by the United States had been complied with and the American govern-
ment would therefore consider the assent given by the government
to the acceptance of the proposals of the American government "as
final and definite". 3 -*" Thus the subtle and direct American diplo-
mat brought the negotiations to a triumphant termination.
Thus far i have shown how the partition of commercial
and industrial interests in the Chinese Empire by the Powers called
forth hay's Chinese policy. It remains for me to point out how
Mr. Hay carried out and maintained the policy during its trying
period, the first lustrum of the present century.
z ® See Supra p. 35, words underlined.
Also p. 36, " "
31 K. Doc. 547, 56 Cong., 1 Sess.
HAY'S CHINESE POLICY.
In the preceding chapter we have noticed that the scrambling
policy of the land-greedy powers, caused "by mutual fears and Jeal-
ousies, called forth reaction from China, the reform movement. Now
we will turn to another phase of China's reaction to the encroachmen'
of the Powers upon the Chinese Empire. Their atrocious actions made
so profound an impression upon the minds of the Chinese people that
they regarded all the Powers as nothing more or less than land
grabbers. This anti-foreign feeling, manifested itself at first in
mob movements against Chinese Christians, finally developed into a
general anti -foreign movement known as the Boxer Uprising. The land-
greedy Powers had a great share in creating the antagonism of the
Chinese to foreigners. "Western injustice toward the v:ast is the
cause of much of the Eastern hatred of the West". 1
The Boxer Uprising had its storm-center in the province
of Shangtung. Up to the fall of 1897 this province wherein there
were more missionaries than any other province was popular for its
treatment of foreigners. How came it about that the people of
Shangtung turned out to be truculent haters of foreigners? The
answer is not hard to seek. It was the seizure of Kiao-chow by the
Germans that worked an ominous change in the attitude of the people
toward foreigners. It was the Germans who burned down two villages
1 G. B. Smith, Causes of Anti-foreign Feeling in China,
Horth American Review 171 : 184.
in a certain district of Shangtung that inflamed the people to mad-
ness. The fanatic people overwhelmed by their anti -foreign feeling
gave vent to their vengeance in slaughtering Roman Catholics, burn-
ing churches, and committing other frightful excesses.
It was not a very hard task for the local authorities to
nip the anti -foreign movement in the bud. But they were instructed
secretly by the Peking government to encourage the movement instead
of suppressing it. Since the coup d' etat the reins of government
were in the hands of a crew of reactionaries, with the empress
dowager as guiding figure. They were drunk with antipathy toward
the foreigners, and it was plainly due to the powers' attitude
toward China. "The various Powers cast upon us looks of tiger-
like voracity, hustling each other in their endeavors. to be the
first to seize upon our innermost territories." Because of this
they resolved to appeal to the last resort for stamping out foreign-
ers, a conduct lacking in tact and judgment. The Peking government
regarded the Boxers as patriots whom it instructed local authorities
to encourage. The fiendish work of the Boxers was allowed and the
Boxers increased in numbers. The diplomatic corps demanded their
suppression in vain. The Boxers gradually worked their way like
wild-fire to the southern Chi hie province and finally reached Peking
in June, 1900.
2 G. B. Smith, Causes of Anti-foreign Feeling in China,
North American Review 171 : 188.
Empress Dowager's edict appeared in the Peking Gazette,
1898, cited in the Boxer Rebellion, Clements Paul Henry, p. 625.
than the Boxer outrage was developing in Shangtung the
property and lives of American missionaries were in danger and they
were endangered indirectly by the Germans. At the request of the
missionaries at Che-foo, the government of the United States in-
structed Mr. Conger, American minister at Peking, to say to the Ger-
man minister that the government of the United States would expect
that the German authorities in Shangtung would see to it that Amer-
ican citizens and particularly American missionaries in that province
should receive equal treatment with German missionaries in the matter
of necessary protection of life and property. The reliance upon
the Germans for the protection of the Americans in Shangtung showed
that at the beginning of the troublous time the American government
had not yet formulated a rule for its conduct. Secretary Hay in-
structed Mr. Conger to do what he could for the protection of Amer-
ican citizens in north China.
When the diplomatic corps was taking measures for the
protection of the legations by bringing guards, Mr. Conger reported
to the Department of State the state of affairs and asked if he was
authorized to concert with the naval authorities on board the U.S.S.
Wheeling ^ measures for the protection of American interests and
the American legation in Peking. To this Mr. Hay promptly consented
and told him to "Act independently in protection of American interests
where practicable and concurrently with representatives of the other
4 Sec. Hay to Mr. Conger, April 16, 1900, .Foreign Relation
of the United States, 1900, p. 116.
5 Arrived at TaiOi April 7, 1900.
powers if necessity arise'. A few days later he communicated with
Mr. Conger that "We have no policy in China, except to protect with
energy American interests and especially American citizens and the
legation. There must be nothing done which would commit us to
future action inconsistent with your standing instructions. There
must be no alliance." Such was the attitude of the united States
towards Chinese affairs at the time when the Boxer movement was
about to reach its climax.
Meanwhile the admirals of the allied fleet anchoring off
Taku were not inactive. They prepared to send a larger force to
Peking to strengthen the legation guards. One of the Taku forts
opened fire upon the ships which attempted to make a landing. The
admirals held a meeting on board the Criturion and made an agreement
to attack the Taku forts. But the American admiral Kempff was
opposed to any concerted action of a hostile nature. He refused to
take part in the hostile action because he was instructed by his
government that he should use his force for the protection of
American interests and citizens in China not for waging war against
her. Moreover, he held that there had been no declaration of war
against China and "a hostile demonstration might consolidate the
anti -foreign elements and strengthen the Boxers to oppose the re-
lieving column". However, the vessels of other Powers bombarded
6 Eay to Conger June 8, 1900, For. Rel. of the J. S.
1900, p. 143.
7 Hay to Conger June 10, 1900, For. Rel. of the U. S.
1900, p. 143.
President McKinley, annual message, Dec. 3, 1900. For .Rel.
of the U.S. 1900, viil.
the Taku forts on June 16th, and after two dayB' engagement, the
forts fell into the hands of the Powers. Then the Manchu government
declared war on the Powers and openly supported the Boxers. The Im-
perial guards joined them. The legations were besieged and "subject
from June 21st to July 27th to a storm of shot, shell and fire-
crackers'.'. The Manchu government was at war with the Powers.
But the local or provincial governments followed a course
of action entirely different from the government at Peking. The
Yangtze valley viceroys Liu Kungyi and Chang Ghi Tung, being aware
of the fact that the central government was violating national
comity and was going to bring disaster to China, formed a league and
made a definite pledge to the following effect. "7fe, the viceroys
of the Liang Kiang and Lean Ku provinces, undertake to hold ourselves
responsible for the security of foreign life and property within our
respective jurisdictions as well as in the province of Chikiang, so
long as the treaty Powers do not land troops in either the Yangtze
valley or the province of Chikiang." 10 Wu Ting Fang, Chinese ministei
at V.'ashington, transmitted the telegram containing this pledge to the
Department of State. The American government was in sympathy with
these viceroys and Secretary Hay assured Mr* Wu that so long as
these viceroys could maintain order in the five provinces and would
afford protection to the lives and rights of the foreigners therein,
the President had no intention of sending any troops into regions
9 Conger's report. For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 552.
10 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 273.
where their presence was not necessary. The Department of State
instructed the American consuls in China to co-operate with the vice-
roys for the preservation of peace and order. Mr. Goodnow, United
States Consul -General at Shanghai, had an interview with Lui Kun Yi
discussing the matter. 12
The development of the seditious movement in Peking went
on. The legations had no comn/uni cat ions with their respective home
governments. The German minister, Baron von Ketteler,was murdered
in Peking. The first relief column was checked at Anting and obliged
to retreat to Tien Tsien. At this moment, the Yangtze valley vice-
roys cabled Mr. Wu asking him to inform the United States govern-
ment that China had no intention whatever of breaking off relations
with the Powers and that these viceroys desired that the American
government would take the initiative in conferring with the govern-
ments of the other Powers urging them to give instructions to the
commanders of the allied force at Tien Tsien to refrain from further
fighting and to wait until Li Hung Chang arrived at /eking and open-
ed negotiations with the diplomatic representatives of various
Powers. 15 Under conditions in Peking as referred to already, the
American government naturally would not agree with the proposition
set forth by the Chinese provincial governments. 14
11 Seo. Eay to Mr. Wu, June 22, 1900. For. Rel. of U.S.,
1900, p. £74.
12 For. Rel. of U. S.,1900, p. 252^
13 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, pp. 274, 275.
14 Sec. Hay's note to Wu June 25, 1900, For. Rel. of the
U. S. , 1900 , p. 275.
The American government, however, began to take a definite
step toward the solution of the Chinese question, since it had
communicated with these viceroys. On July 3rd Secretary nay sent
to eleven Powers a circular telegram proclaiming the attitude of the
American government. The main points are these:
1. The United states would adhere to the policy, initiated
by it in the treaty of peace of 1857 with the Chinese nation, of
furtherance of lawful commerce, and of the protection of lives and
property of the citizens guaranteed under extraterritorial treaty
right 8 and by the law of nations.
2. The United States proposed to hold the responsible
authors to the uttermost accountability, if wron^ should be done
to American citizens in China.
3. The United States regarded the condition at Peking as
one of anarchy, and would remain at peace with the local authorities
so long as they used their power in protecting the lives and proper-
ty of foreigners in China, and it would regard them as representing
the Chinese people.
4. The President's object was to act concurrently with
the other Powers in opening up communication with Peking and res-
cuing the American officials and citizens in danger and in protect-
ing all American legitimate interests in all parts of China and in
aiding to prevent the disturbance from spreading to other parts of
the Chinese Empire and to prevent the recurrence of such disorder.
5. The United States aimed at (1) a solution of the
problem which might bring about permanent safety and peace to China,
(2) preservation of Chinese territorial and administrative entity.
(3) protection of all rights granted to fr : endly powers by treaty
and international law, and finally the maintenance of the principle
of equal and impartial trade in China.
ThiB declaration received general approval from the Powers.
Each of them intimated that it intended to adhere to these princi-
ples. The French Minister of Foreign Affaire, Mr. Delcasse', announc-
ed in the Chamber of Jepute that France did not wish for the break-
up of China but wished for concerted action on the part of the
Powers during the preeent trouble in China. 16 Lord Salisbury, Pre-
mier of Great Britain, expreseed his sincere sympathy with the
attitude of the United States. 17 ^ven the Russian government, evi-
dently by working for its ulterior aims in Manchuria, announced that
it had "no designs of territorial acquisition in China". Thus the
Powers, with the exception of Russia in Manchuria, followed the
guiding principles, set out by Secretary Hay, and took concerted
action throughout the trying period of the Boxer trouble.
In the second relief expedition the Powers manifested
their attitude toward the principles, laid down by Hay. An inter-
national force of 18,800 men wae finally organized. To this force
the United States contributed 2,500 soldiers who came from the
Philippines. The international force was under the command of
15 For Hay 1 s note dated July 3, 1900, see For. Hel. of
the U. S. , 1900, p. 299.
16 For. Rel. of the J. S. , 1900, p. 317.
17 ibid. p. 313.
18 ibid. p. 304.
Field Marshal Count von Y/aldersee. On August 4, the allied forces
began to move toward .'eking. Having defeated the Boxers and the
imperial troops who attempted to check the advance of the allied
forces, they reached Peking, stormed and took it on August 13th.
Then followed the raising of the siege of the legations, and the
looting of the city by the troops of some of the Powers. The city
was occupied jointly by them upon a definite understanding among
themselves. The last attempt of the Manchu government for the ex-
pulsion of the foreigners from China was thus brought to an end.
How the absorbing ouestion, what should be done with
China, invited the attention of every Power. China was in a pecul-
iar situation. The Manchu court had fled to Shansi when the allied
forces were near the capital. There was no central government but
there was a league of local governments which would represent the
Chinese nation. Li Hung Chang was appointed commissioner to nego-
tiate peace with the diplomatic representatives of the Powers.
Staring at each other they were at first at a loss as to the next
step toward the solution of the Chinese question. Then the German
government stepped forward with its proposal for a preliminary con-
dition in peace negotiations. The condition was that the Chinese
government should surrender such persons as were determined upon
by the diplomatic representatives at Peking as being the leaders
and perpetrators of the "crimes committed in Peking against inter-
national law" 19 . The German government communicated the proposal
to the government of other Powers.
19 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, x> . 341.
Germany' 8 allies, the Austrian and Italian governments,
naturally agreed with the proposal. But the reply of the United
States government did not sound agreeable to the Germans. It con-
tained three points: firstly, the Chinese government itself should
be allowed to work out the punitive measures, and the United States
would not join the demand that the surrender of such persons should
be a preliminary condition for diplomatic negotiation with China;
secondly, the punishment of the responsible authors of wrongs in
all parts in China should be provided for in the negotiation for
final settlement; and, thirdly, the United States wished to open
negotiations with China at the earliest practical moment with a view
of bringing about a preliminary settlement whereby the Chinese
government could exercise fully its powers for the preservation of
order and for the protection of foreigners in China. 20
Following the German proposal, the trench government ad-
dressed notes to the other Powers, stating its proposals as basis
of negotiations with the Chinese government. The proposals were
1. The punishment of the principal guilty persons who
were to be designated by the representatives at Peking.
2. The continuance of the interdiction against the import-
ation of arms.
3. Equitable indemnities for foreign governments, corpor-
ations, and individuals.
20 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p 34.
4. The organization in Peking of a permanent guard for
5. The dismantling of the forts at Tajui.
6. The military occupation of two or three points on the
road from Tien Tsien to Peking. 21
As to these bases for negotiation, the American government
held quite different views. it would not commit itself to a perman-
ent participation in occupation of points on the road between Tien-
Tsien.and Peking and deemed "it desirable that the powers should ob-
tain from the Chinese government the assurance of their rights to
guard their legations and to have means of unrestricted access to
them whenever required". 22 By making this reservation, the govern-
ment of the United States did not mean to present any obstacle to
the initiation of negotiations but hoped that it would be found
practicable to begin such negotations at early days.
The French proposals were accepted by the Powers with
certain reservations. But negotiations between the Chinese pleni-
potentiaries and the diplomatic representatives did not begin until
the middle of October. During the period between the fall of Peking
and the opening of negotiations the members of the diplomatic
corps were busy in formulating their demands.
Meanwhile remarkable events developed in Northern China.
After the capture of the capital several expeditions of retaliation
21 For. Rel. of the J. S. , 1900, p. 321
22 ibid. 1900, p. 523.
under the command of von /,'aldersee were made to Pao-Tingfu and Cheng
Tingfu in the province of Chihli. For the purpose of securing peace,
Li nung Chang ordered Chinese troops not to interfere with the ex-
cursions upon any account. The incursion troops had done consider-
able damage to the people of Chihli. The American troops did not
participate in these expeditions.
Tien Tsien, as already pointed out elsewhere, had b^-en
occupied by the allies since June 23. The city became a strong
temptation to the Powers. At last they could no longer control them-
selves and indulged in struggle for permanent extensions of the con-
cessions which they had established. Russia which had disavowed
territorial designs in China, now had the honour of making the first
move in a land-grab game on a smaller scale. In early November, the
Russian consuls in Tien Tsien announced that the large tract of land
on the left bank of the Pen River became the property of the Russian
troops by act of war. 2 ^ Then followed Belgium, Germany, France,
Austria, Italy, and Japan, each taking a tract of land for the ex-
tension of its own concession. * Only a piece of land, which had
been an American concession and abandoned in the year 1896, was left.
Mr. Conger regarded Russia's movement as a dangerous precedent,
when Mr. Rogsdale , American consul at Tien Tsien, reported the
Russian announcement to him. He maintained that all action in
25 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 42.
24 For announcements for the occupation of the lands by
the Powers see For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, pp. 46, 47, 52.
25 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, pp. 39, 40.
relation to securing now or extending old concessions should be de-
ferred until a final settlement of the Boxer question was reached
and the rights of all nations could be considered, he instructed Mr.
Rogsdale to address a protest to the Russian consul but the reply of
the latter was evasive. Then he addressed a note to his Russian
colleague at Peking demonstrating that "Tien Tsien is an open port
and the property under question is needed by and should be reserved
for the use of all the Powers. If foreign occupation of it was
necessary it should be occupied as an international settlement. Un-
der the present movement of the allied forces in China, there are
still stronger reasons why this large tract of land, including an
important public railway station and other property necessary for
international use should not be appropriated by a single power. 26
The Russian minister r s reply was very curious. It dis-
claimed any intention of acquiring territory by conquest, or of tak-
ing possession of railway station at Tien Tsien by Russian govern-
ment. It made a poor evasion b; r saying "If the communication of
Mr. Poppe contains any expressions which could be so constructed
n P 7
they have certainly been erroneously used by him. Mr. Conger
asked the Russian minister to instruct the Russian consul to have
the error corrected but the note had no effect. The same was the
case with his protests to the other Powers.
The nest step which he took in regard to the matter at
Tien Tsien, was to reserve that tract of land formerly the American
26 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 45.
27 ibid 1901, p. 45.
oonoesBion for the United States concession or "preferably have it in-
cluded in an international settlement . " 2e He held that all the
foreign settlements at Tien Tsien should be th^ same as those at
Shanghai. Ee instructed ilr. Rogsdale to communicate with his col-
leagues at Tien Tsien to the following effect:
"For the purpose of preserving the tract of land known as
the United States concession in Tien Tsien, to be with other tracts
organized into an international settlement if >ossible, but if not
then at the proper time whenever it may legally be done to be oc-
cupied as a United States concession."
It was too much to hope that any of the Powers which once
got hold of territory would let it slip out of its grip. As he re-
alized the attempt of rendering the settlements in Tien Tsien inter-
national was impossible, Mr. Conger telegraphed the Department of
State urging that it would be advantageous to the United States in
many ways to have an American concession at the port. Secretary hay
was fully in accord with his view and instructed him to make a de-
mand upon the Chinese government for the consideration of the rights
of the United States to a concession there. When he brought up the
question of retrocession of the land before the Chinese government
troubles arose. The difficulties were not from the Chinese but from
some foreign concerns which were deadly adverse to the restoration
of the land to the United States. The Chinese government offered as
Conger to Rogsdale, For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 51.
For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, p. 51.
a compromise a larger tract of land down the ..'eh River. Mr. Conger
refused to accept the offer but insisted upon the restoration of the
old United States concession. He reported to Hay that "Before the
affair is concluded we shall hear some strenuous German opposition'.' M
As Hay did not wish that the Chinese policy of the United States
should deviate even slightly from its traditional and nuwly re-
affirmed policy - the maintenance of Chinese territorial integrity
he replied, it seems undesirable to press the matter further
at present". Thus the United States remained a landless power in
When the "grab game n was played by the Powers in Tien Tsier
the peace negotiations dragged along in Peking. As Mr. Conger was
allowed leave of absence from his post, Mr. Rockhill succeeded him
as representative of the American government in the negotiation. He
acted independently but harmoniously in the concert of the Powers
and exerted a salutary influence in the course of moderation, human -
ity, and justice. Like Mr. Conger he tried with vigor and pru-
dence to check any measure that might "cripple or impede the ability
of China in the maintenance of a stable government and its terri-
torial integrity"^ They strove to control the action of their
Conger to Hay, For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1901, pp.55, 56
31 Hay to Conger, Ilov. 27, 1901, For. Rel. of the U.S.,
1901, pp. 55, 59
" W. W Rockhill was appointed commissioner to China
June 27 , 1900
33 Rockhill's report to . ay, For . Eel. of the U. S. , 1901,
Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 432.
colleagues to that end bo that the "open door" policy might not be
placed in peril. 36
The most complicated question of the peace terms was that
of indemnity. It involved two phases, the amount of the indemnities
and the manner of paying them, both requiring serious consideration.
These questions were settled with difficulty and after much delay.
The indemnities were to be paid in a lump sum and the sum total
amounted to 45,000,000 taels. The claim of the United States was
the lowest, being 32,939,055 taels equivalent to $24,168,367. The
actual losses and military expenses aggregated about ^11,000,000.
In 1908 Congress passed a bill authorizing the ?resident to modify
the indemnity and to remit the surplus to China as "an act of
fri endship" 3 ^ The remission began on the 1st day of January of
1909. The Chinese government has since then used the money thus
returned to send Chinese young men to study in American colleges.
The negotiations of ten weary months ultimately reached
a conclusion. The final protocol contained twelve articles which
may be grouped under four headings as follows: (1) preventive
measures against the reoccurrence of anti-foreign movements, (2)
the punishment of the leaders of the Boxer movement, (3) the indem-
nification and (4) improvement of diplomatic and commercial rela-
tions between China and the Powers. The protocol or peace agreement
Foster, American Diplomacy in the Orient, p. 4.32.
36 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1908, p. 4.
37 ibid p. 72.
was 3igned by the diplomatic corps and the Chinese plenipotentiaries
at Peking on September 7, 1901. The Powers agreed upon the evacu-
ation of the capital. The American troops were the first to with-
draw from the city and those of the other Powers remained a few
months after the withdrawal of the United States troops.
One of the important results of the Boxer uprising was
the occupation of Manchuria by the Russians. On the 5th of August,
1900, they seized the treaty port of iTiu-Chwang and placed it under
the civil administration of Russian authorities. They garrisoned
some fifty points in the three eastern provinces. The Russian
government announced to the other Powers late in August that the
military occupation of Manchuria was temporary and that as soon as
order in the region was attained, "Russia would not fail to with-
draw her troops from Chinese territory, provided that the action
of the other powers does not place any obstacle in the way of such
a measure". The announcement served the purpose of allaying the
apprehensions of the other Powers but it committed the Russian govern
ment to the evacuation of Manchuria. It became a diplomatic question
in the far East during the period from the Boxer insurrection to
the Russo-Japanese War.
Before taking up the diplomatic complications involved
in this question let us discuss the Anglo-German agreement of which
the main aim was to hold Russia's territorial designs on northern
China in check. The agreement was signed by the contracting parties
on the 16th of October, 1900. The second article of the agreement
reads: "The Imperial German Government and Fer Britainic Majesty's
Parliamentary Papers on China, No.l, 1900.
Government will not on their part make use of the present compli-
cation (Boxer Uprising) 39 to obtain for themselves any territorial
advantages in Chinese dominions and will direct their policy toward
maintaining undiminished the territorial condition of the Chinese
This agreement strengthened Hay's policy newly reaffirmed
in the note of July 3, but it was a blow to Russian ambition in
China. Moreover it supported the view of the American government
as to the opposition to any plan which contemplated the prolonged
occupation of any portion of China. 41
But the agreement and announcement were to Russia nothing
more than "scraps of paper". She interpreted the doctrine of con-
certed action as not applying to her action in Manchuria. According-
ly she appeared on the one hand to be eager for co-operation with
the other Powers in sending the expedition to Peking and in peace
negotiations but on the other hand she acted independently in the
three eastern provinces. She steadily worked for the permanent
occupation of these provinces and tried to exclude other nations
by various concessions which she extracted from the Chinese govern-
ment in the years 1901 and 1902. In taking steps toward this end
she met with decided opposition from Japan, Great Britain, and the
United states. The protests of the former two Powers do not concern
39 Inserted by the writer of this thesis.
40 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 354.
41 Fay to Rockhill. For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1900, p. 260.
us directly, let us notice how Secretary Hay proceeded.
In February, 1902, Hay addressed identical notes to eleven
"Any agreement by which China cedes to any corporation or
company the exclusive right and privilege of opening mines, estab-
lishing railroads, or in any other way industrially developing
Manchuria can but be viewed with the gravest concern by the govern-
ment of the United States of America. It constitutes a monopoly,
which is a distinct breach of the stipulations of treaties con-
cluded between China and foreign powers, and thereby seriously
affects the rights of American citizens; it restricts their right-
ful trade and exposes it to being discriminated against, interfered
with, or otherwise jeopardized, and strongly tends towards perman-
ently impairing the sovereign rights of China in this part of the
Empire, and seriously interferes with her ability to meet her in-
ternational obligations. Furthermore such concessions on the
part of china will undoubtedly be followed by demands from other
powers for similar and equal exclusive advantages in other parts
of the Chinese Empire, and the inevitable result must be the com-
plete wreck of the policy of absolute equality of treatment of all
nations in regard to trade, navigation, and commerce within the
confines of the Empire.
M 0n the other hand, the attainment by one power of such
exclusive privileges for a commercial organization of its nation-
ality conflicts with the assurances, repeatedly conveyed to this
government by the imperial Russian ministry of foreign affairs of
the imperial government's intention to follow the policy of the
open door in China, as advocated by the government of the United
States and accepted by all the treaty powers having commercial
interests in the Empire.
M It is for these reasons t^at the government of the United
States submits the above to the earnest consideration of
the imperial governments of China and Russia, confident that they
will give due weight to its importance and adopt such measures as
will relieve that just and natural anxiety of the United States." 42
The Russian government tried to evade this by giving the
American government the assurance that international rights would
be respected, wowever it was compelled to change its attitude by
the formation of the Anglo- Japanese Alliance. The object of that
alliance was to protect the interests of the contracting parties
in China and Korea by means of maintaining the territorial integrity
of the two nations. The Russian government did not fail to see that
there were not a few obstacles in the way of its plan in Manchuria
and made an agreement with the Chinese government to carry out the
evacuation of the three eastern provinces in the following manner:
within six months after the signature of the agreement the Russians
were to evacuate the south-western portion of the province of
Mukden up to the Liao River; within the following six months,
the remainder of Mukden and the province of Kiren; and within the
six months following the second withdrawal all the Russian troops
were to leave the province of Fielung Chang.
42 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1902, p. 926.
In spite of this agreement, the Russian government would
not carry out the evacuation without compensation. When the date
for the first withdrawal came, it called back the soldiers from
their stations and distributed them along the railway lines as guards
In April, 1903, it made demands upon the Chinese government. The
most important demands were: firstly, in Manchuria no new treaty
ports were to be opened; secondly, no territory in that region was
to be alienated to any other power; and thirdly, no new consuls
without previous consent of the Russian government should be ad-
mitted. 43 But these demands were rejected by the Chinese govern-
ment because the American and British governments warned the latter
of the danger of accepting them.
In September, 1903, the Russian minister at Peking ap-
proached the Chinese government with the information that Russia
would carry out the final evacuation if China would agree upon these
conditions: no part of Manchuria was to be alienated to the other
powers; no concession would be made to England without equivalent
provisions for Russia; the telegraph lines from Port Arthur and
Niu chwang to Mukden should be left in Russian hands; and there
should be no increase in the import tariff on goods entering Man-
churia by rail. All these stringent measures for closing Manchuria
against the economic enterprise of all foreigners were in direct
opposition to the principles laid down by Fay.
The persistent diplomat could not be beaten by such
measures. He exerted efforts to put through a treaty of commerce
° Conger to Fay, April 23, 1903, For. Rel. of the U. S. ,
1903, pp. 53, 54.
with China. He thought it necessary to open ports in Manchuria to
foreign trade in order to beat Russia's policy of exclusion. The
treaty of commerce between the United States and China was signed
on October 8th , 1903. Its important provisions were: (1) the
Chinese government itself agreed to open Mukden, and Antung as places
for international residence and trade (Art. XV); (2) citizens of the
United states should have the right to carry on in Chinese territory
mining operations and other necessary business relating thereto
(Art. VIII); and (3) missionary societies of the United States should
be permitted to rent and lease in perpetuity, as the property of such
societies, building or land in all parts of the Empire for mission-
ary purposes (Art. XII). 44
When the date 45 for final evacuation came the Russians
were still in occupation of the larger part of Manchuria with the
exception of the region outside the Liao River and still in control
of Niu Chwang. By the end of October they reoccupied Mukden. It
was estimated that the Russian soldiers then in Manchuria amounted
to 45,000 46 The Russian government showed no intention whatever,
to carry out the provisions of the agreement. It became increasing-
ly evident that the Russians would not evacuate Manchuria unless
they were driven out.
Now Japan demanded that Russia should live up to her
44 For the text of the treaty see For. Rel. of the U.S.,
1903, pp. 91, 99.
45 Oct. 8, 1903.
Fornbeck, Contemporary Politics in the Far i.ast, p. 250.
promise. It was not because the Japanese government stood for in-
ternational justice but because the occupation of Llanchuria by the
Russians was a menace to Japan *s safety. Furthermore Japan bad in-
terests in Korea conflicting with those of the Russians therein.
In 1896 the Japanese government proposed to the Russian government
the partition of Korea, but the proposal was refused. The Rus-
sians established a barrier in north Korea against Japanese politi-
cal and commercial expansion. The Japanese government had forborne
for a few years. since the conclusion of the Anglo- Japanese alli-
ance it was backed up by the British government and thus was in a
position to reckon with the Russians. It sent the Russian govern-
ment a series of proposals as regards t>»e mutual recognition of
their respective spheres of influence in Manchuria and in Korea.
The Russian government refused to come to an understanding with the
Japanese government. The latter thereupon broke off diplomatic re-
lations and ordered its fleet to attack Port Arthur on February 8,
1904. On the next day the two countries declared war.
The war, known as the Russo-Japanese War, from the be-
ginning to the end was fought on the Chinese territory which was
rendered by the Russian occupation into a state of "double or am-
biguous sovereignty" 48 The problem of maintaining the neutrality
and integrity of China became a thorny subject confronting the
diplomats of the world, especially Secretary Hay. He adhered to
47 Russian Official History of the Russo-Japanese War
cited in Ross, Russo-Japanese War, Vol. I, p. 22.
48 Hershey, International Law and Diplomacy of Russo-
Japanese War, p. 250.
his policy of the maintenance of the territorial integrity of China.
Fe defended it during these troublous times with a view of preserv-
ing the integrity and neutrality of China proper and of limiting
the area of hostilities. On February 10, 1904, he sent instructions
to American representatives at the courts of Russia, China and Japan
The note reads thus:
"You will express to ministers of foregin affairs the
earnest desire of this government of the United States that in the
course of the military operations which have begun between Russia
and Japan the neutrality of China and in all practicable ways her
administrative entity shall be respected by both parties, and that
the area of hostilities shall be localized and limited as much as
possible so that undue excitement and disturbance of the Chinese
people may be prevented and the least possible loss to commerce
and peaceful intercourse of the world may be occasioned.
At the same time Mr. Hay through the instrumentality of
American representatives communicated his ideas to ten European
Powers and invited their concurrence. With the exception of Spain,
all the Powers gave favorable replies. The three countries con-
cerned, Russia, Japan and China also accepted the principles.
japan accepted the proposals of the United States with
the reservation that "so long as Russia, making a similar engagement*
fulfills in good faith the terms and conditions of such engagement." 50
For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1904, p. 2.
ibid p. 2.
The acceptance of the proposals by the Russian government was made
upon these conditions: (1) neutralization in no case was to be ex-
tended to Manchuria; (2) China should observe strict neutrality;
(5) Japan should loyally observe the engagement. All the reserva-
tions made by the belligerents served as loop-holes by means of
which they later escaped from their obligations.
As the war went on Japan won victory after victory over
Russia by land and sea. It seemed there was no hope for Russia to
retrieve the lose she suffered and furthermore a rebellion threatened
her at home. On the other hand Japan was on the point of exhaustion
though she tried hard to conceal it. At this psychological moment
President Roosevelt approached the belligerents with proposal for
peace and the proposal was heartily accepted by them. Negotiations
were conducted in America and were closed by the Portsmouth treaty
which was signed on September 5, 1905.
The treaty provided for (1) the transfer of Russia^
rights in Liao Tung peninsula to Japan, (2) the cession of the
southern section of the Manchuria Railway to Japan, and (3) the
withdrawal of the Russian and the Japanese troops by their respective
governments from Manchuria but the maintenance by them of railway
guards. As regards the open door policy, it provided specifically
that neither Japan nor Russia should obstruct "any general measures
common to all countries which China may take for the development of
commerce and industry of Manchuria". In addition Russia declared
51 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1904, p. 2.
52 See Treaty of Peace between Russia and Japan, cited in
Millard, Our Eastern Question, appendix C.
that she *ad "not in Manchuria any territorial advantages or prefer-
ential or exclusive concessions in impairment of Chinese sovereignty
or inconsistent with the principle of equal opportunity?. 53
Before the conclusion of the Portsmouth treaty a sort of
apprehension had existed among the Powers other than the belligerent
that in the eventual negotiation for peace between Russia and Japan,
claim might have been made for the concession of Chinese territory
to the neutral powers. 54 Secretary way communicated to the Powers
on January 13, 1905, notes declaring:
"The United States had repeatedly made its position well
known and has been gratified at the cordial welcome accorded to its
efforts to strengthen and perpetuate the broad principal policy of
maintaining the integrity of China and the open door in the Orient
whereby equality of commercial opportunity and accesses shall be
enjoyed by all nations. Folding these views the United States dis-
claims any thought of reserved territorial rights or control in
the Chinese Empire, and it is deemed fitting to make this purpose
frankly known and to remove all apprehension on this scare so far
as concerns the policy of this nation 1,55 All the Powers gave
favorable replies to the American government, stating that they
would adhere to the policy of the territorial integrity of China
53 See Treaty of Peace between Russia and Japan, cited in
Millard, Our Eastern Question, Appendix C.
54 Moore, International Law Digest, Vol. V, p. 555.
55 Ms. Inst. Austria, V.144, cited Moore, International
Law Digest, Vol. V, pp. 554, 555.
and the open door in the Orient.
The circular telegram of January 13, 1905, was the last
important document that Secretary Fay sent to the Powers reaffirming
hiB Chinese policy and inviting their adherence to it. Fis sudden
death on July 1, 1905, prevented him from doing something more for
his policy in China during the negotiations for peace between Russia
and japan which was opened two months after his death. Ever since
the announcement of his policy in the second year of his term as
secretary, he assumed the leadership in the diplomacy in the Par
East. He never failed in getting the Powers to declare their inten-
tion to adhere to his policy although certain Powers never lived up
to their pledges. In defending his policy during the trying times
such as the Boxer uprising and the troubles in Manchuria, it is
safe to say, none of his successors has surpassed him in enthusiasm,
effort and skill.
As already pointed out Kay's policy was based upon two
principles: first, the open door and equal opportunity; and, second,
the territorial integrity of China. The former implies and is prac-
tically synonymous to commercial and industrial neutralization,
while the latter fundamentally means the maintenance of political
equilibrium in the Chinese Empire. If there is any need for an in-
ternational policy that can harmonize the interests of the Powers in
China and that can secure equally favorable conditions under which
various nations engaged in the Far Eastern trade can compete with
each other, that policy must contain these two essential principles.
To promote these purposes, no other policy is better than the Hay
policy. Its soundness accounted for the fact that the majority of
the powers readily and sincerely accepted it when announced in 1899.
Besides this the success of the Lay policy finds its ex-
planation in the manner in which it was carried out. Simplicity,
directness, and openness characterized nay's diplomatic procedure.
At the so-called psychological moment he appealed with his principles
first to those nations whose policies in China were in accord with
his. Having gotten favorable replies from them, he then communicated
his principles, together with the assurances from the Powers, to
the power which tended to be antagonistic. The latter therefore
could not help to shape its answer so as to appear advocating the
policy. Thus Hay succeeded in bringing the Powers concerned to an
agreement upon his proposal 8 whenever he brought them up before
various governments. To get support for his policy from the majority
of the family of nations, so that the rest could not but conform,
was the key note of his procedure.
The immediate results of hay's negotiations in 1899 were
noticeable. In the first place the land-grabbing policy of the
Powers was held in check. By declaring that they would not expect
to have exclusive rights in their respective spheres of influence,
they claimed that they limited the extent of their future demands
and that they expressed an intention not to interfere thenceforth
with China's sovereign rights. In the second place the commercial
world was secured in the enjoyment of all its rights under treaties
During the Boxer uprising hay's policy announced in the
note of July 3, 1900, served as a guiding principle whereby the
lowers, except Kussia in Manchuria, agreed to take united action.
They took concerted action in all measures, such as the relief ex-
pedition and peace negotiations. This concurrence on the part of
the Powers saved China from dismemberment.
The first lustrum of the present century marked a struggle
between Hay's Chinese policy and Russia's policy in Manchuria. Hay's
measure to open up Manchuria to the world trade was flatly opposed
to the policy of exclusion of the Hussian government. Eis protests
and demonstrations kept it busy with denial and explanation and at
last exacted from it the convention for the evacuation of ilanchuria.
Though we can not say that this was solely due to his opposition,
we are safe to say that it was one of the factors.
Before 1905 the Russian government was the only opponent
of the Hay policy but after the Russo-Japanese war the enemy of the
hay policy increased in number. By the treaty of Portsmouth both
Japan and Russia gave formal pledges to respect the integrity of
China and the open door. But none of them lived up to the pledges.
Russia resumed her oil policy in northern Manchuria while Japan in
southern Manchuria took up measures as aggressive as that of its
predecessor. The two governments seemed to have reached an agree-
ment to break down the Hay principles.
Secretary Root and his successor Knox were earnest de-
fenders of the ^ay policy. m 19u8 Rout protested against Russia's
attempt at establishing her control over Northern Manchuria but in
vain. When the Russian demands were disclosed in 1909 Knox made an
equally earnest protest but it was no more effective than that of
his predecessor. In the next year a British and American syndicate
secured a concession from the Chinese government to build a rail-
way, known as the Chin-chow Aigun Railway. Secretary Knox proposed
to the countries most concerned that the entire railroad system of
Manchuria should be brought under an international administration
and for purely commercial purposes. 1 He also communicated this
idea to Great Britain, Germany and France. 2 His proposal did not
receive warm support from the three Powers and met with emphatic
rejection from the Russian and the Japanese governments. Thus the
1 For. Rel. of the U. S. , 1910, p. 234.
For the correspondence with the ?owers see ibid pp.254,
attempt at neutralization of Manchurian railways failed.
The reason why the Japanese government was opposed to this
arrangement was plain. Uo sooner than the signature of the Ports-
mouth treaty, Japan extracted from the Chinese government the secret
Komura treaty by which Japan was to enjoy special privileges in rail-
way building and other enterprises in southern Manchuria. Later on
the South Manchuria Railway Company was organized as an instrumental-
ity of getting hold of all the railways in that quarter of Llanchuria.
The semi -governmental concern gave special railway rates to Japanese
traders. Such actions were absolutely antagonistic to the princi-
ples of equal opportunity and the open door.
Nineteen years ago hay's declaration together with the
assurance of the Powers created a political and economical equilib-
rium in China. It was disturbed by Japan's seizure of Xiao-Chow
in August, 1914. The Japanese government went so far that in May,
1917, it declared that there was no obligation on the part of Japan
to return the place to China. It deliberately violated the prin-
ciple of the preservation of China's integrity.
Further still the Japanese government in 1915 pressed
the famous twenty -one demands under five groups upon the Chinese
government and forced it to acquiesce to the demands of the first
four groups. Japan thus secured direct, explicit special privileges
which are distinctly contradictory to the "equal opportunity". She
is not yet through with China. Her designs on the latter have been
increasing from time to time. Taking advantage of the great war,
she has extended her illegitimate ambition as fully as possible
while China is struggling for reconstitution and stability. When
the Lansing-lshii agreement was disclosed last year, apprehension
existed among the Chinese that Japan might push her way in China
still farther. This she has attempted to do. Late in last month
we saw a statement in the Chicago tribune , saying that Japan had
made severe demands upon China. Since the European V/ar broke out,
the Japanese government has done what it likes without the slightest
regard to the hay policy. Nay, it has openly violated the policy,
initiated by the American government and guaranteed by the leading
Is the government of the United States going to let the
policy fall into obscurity or to try its best to defend it?
If the United States were an isolated or hermit nation
in the "/est as it was a century ago, the preservation of the Hay
policy would mean very little. But it is a world power, a nation
of foreign trade. Its growth depends upon the maintenance of foreign
trade. The possibilities lying in trade between it and china are
certainly great. "China is at the beginning of a commercial develop-
ment which in its magnitude can not be estimated." if the Americans
expect to have the Chinese market open to the export trade of the
United states, they should pay special attention to the hay policy.
Its downfall means the loss of a good market for American products.
The United States has developed a consistent policy in
China and for about a quarter century has pursued it definitely there-
in as it has followed the Monroe joc trine in South America. A
policy to a nation is no less important than its sovereignty. The
government in upholding and defending its foreign policy is under
the same obligation as in defending the territory. As the United
States government never fails to maintain the Lonroe joq tri ne ,
there is no reason why it should assume a passive attitude towards
the Hay policy. If this government will maintain the prestige of
the United States in the Far East, and the weight of its voice in
the council of Far Eastern Affairs, it needs scarcely to be told
that it should do something positive for its Chinese policy.
Twenty years ago the conflicting policies of the Powers
in China threatened a collision among them. Fortunately the Hay
policy upon which the Powers agreed removed the sources of inter-
national irritation. Russia's departure from the policy destroyed
the status quo in the Far East and thus led to the Russo-Japanese
War. Since then the Powers, except Japan, have been trying to
maintain the balance of power in the extreme East. But during
recent years Japan has disturbed the political equilibrium and she
is evidently a menace to the peace of the Far East. If that menace
is allowed to exist, it is not unlikely that a great war will be
fought by the Powers in the Orient.
A readjustment among the Powers in the Far East seems as
necessary as it is in Europe. It is highly desirable that the ques
tion of that readjustment will be taken up in the peace conference
which sooner or later will close the European "tfar . The writer of
the present thesis is quite convinced that unless it is based upon
the Eay principles, that readjustment can not restore the political
and economical equilibrium, which has been totally disturbed by
Japan, and secure permanent peace to the Far East as well as to the
world. Would it not he wise if the government of the United States
in that peace conference should exert its influence in bringing the
Power 8 to an agreement upon the enforcement of the Hay policy?
1. Books and Pamphlets.
House executive Documents, 26th Gong. 1st Sess. . Vols . I & II, 1839-40,
House Executive Documents, 26th Cong. 2nd Sess. , Vol. IV, 1840,
Foreign Relations of the United States, 1890-97. Wash: ngton ,1891-98
President's Message and foreign Relations, 1898-1900, Washington,
Foreign delations of the United States, 1901-10 .Washington 1902-1915.
British and Foreign State Papers, Vol. 92, London, 1904.
Parliamentary Papers, Vol. CIX, China No. 1 (1899) London, 1899.
Parliamentary Papers, Vol. XV, China llos. 1,2,3,4 (1900) London, 1900
parliamentary -apers, Vol. XOI, China Nos. 2,5,6, (1901) London, 1901
Parliamentary Papers, Vol. CX, China No. 2 (1904), London, 1904.
Malloy, W. W. , Treaties and Conventions concluded between the United
States of America and the other Powers since
July 4, 17 76, Vols. I, II, Washington, 1909.
Moore, J. B . , A Digest of International Law, Vol.5 .Washington, 1906.
Webster, D. Webster's Work (in 18 volumes) National Edition,
Vol. XI, XII, Boston, 1903.
II. Magazine Articles.
Austin, a.B. , "Recent Developments in China"
in the Forum, 27; 730, Hew Yor* , 1899.
Beresford, G. , "China and the powers"
Mortj; American Keview, 168; 550, Boston, 1899 .
"British Policy in China"
Spectator, 8£; 849, London 1899 .
Crozier, W. , "American Troops in the Light of the Peking
North American Review, 172; 225 , Boston, 1900.
Dilke, C.W., "American Policy in China"
north American Review, 170,642, Boston, 1900.
"England and Lord Salisbury's Hew Policy"
Fortnightly, 74; ££7, London, 1903.
Gundry, R S. , "Sphere of influence and the Open Door"
Fortnightly, 7£; 37 London, 1902.
"Open Door in China".
Outlook, 64; 530, Hew York, 1900.
Quincy, J., "The United States in China"
Contemporary, 78; 183, London, 1900.
Rockhill, Ti. W. /'United States and Future of China"
Forum, £9; 324, Hew York, 1900.
"Russia and the Open Door"
Contemporary Review, 79; 188, London, 1901.
Smith, G. B . , "Causes of Anti-foreign Feeling in China"
Uorth American Review, 171; 182, Boston, 1900.
B. Secondary Works.
Bashford, J. W. , China an Interpretation, Hew York, 1916.
Clements, P, H. , The Boxer Rebellion, New York, 1S15.
Colquhoun, A. R., China in Transformation, London, 1899.
Coolidge, A. C, The United States as a World Power, Hew York, 1912
Douglas. R . K. , History of China, New York, 1899.
Fish, C. R . , American Diplomacy, New York, 1916.
Foster, J. W., American Diplomacy in the Orient, Boston and New
Hart, A.B. , American L.istory told by Contemporaries, Vol. IV
(1845-1900) Hew York, 1903.
Eart , A. B. , The American Nation: A History, Vol. 25. New
York and London, 1907.
Hayes, J. H. , A Political and Social history of Modern Europe,
VoX, X, XI, New York, 1917.
Hue hvarists Regis The Chinese empire, Vol. I, II, London, 1855.
Ireland, Allegue, China and the Powers, London, 1902.
Johnston, T..F., American Foreign Relations, Vol. I, II, New
Knox, ?. C. , Spirits and Purpose of the American Diplomacy,
New York, 1910.
Krausse, A. S. , The Far East, London, 1903.
Lalourette, K.S., The Development of China, New York, 1917.
Lorenzo, Sears, John Hay Author and Statesman, New York, 1914.
Millard, T.T., America and the Far hast Question, New York, 1909.
Millard, T. T. , Our hastern Question, New York, 1916.
Millard, T. T. The New Far last. New York, 1906.
Moore, J. B., A Review of Our Foreign gelations in the Far
..ast, boston, 1899.
Moore, J. 3., American Diplomacy, New Yor* and London, 1905.
Smith, A. H. , China a» d America .oday. New York, 1907.
Thayer, W. R. , The Life and Letters of John Hay, Boston and
New York, 1912.
Von Schierbrand, Wolf, America, Asia and the ?acific,New York, 1904
Williams, P. W. , Anson Burlingame, New York, 1912.
Wu Ting Fang. Mutual Helpfulness between China and the United
States, Washington, 1901.